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The King's Evil (Christopher Redmayne) Paperback – August 9, 2010
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About the Author
- Publisher : Allison & Busby; Reprint edition (August 9, 2010)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 378 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0749008970
- ISBN-13 : 978-0749008970
- Item Weight : 9.1 ounces
- Dimensions : 5 x 1 x 7.7 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,055,765 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Set in 1666 London, the book opens with the Great Fire that destroyed much of London. Our leads in this story, Architect Christopher Redmayne and Constable Jonathan Bale, are two very different, yet very likable men. They are brought together unexpectedly by the murder of Sir Ambrose Northcott and team up to try and figure out who killed him and why. Christopher has designed a house for Sir Northcott, and Jonathan is the Constable for the area he was murdered in. While the two get off to a rocky start (both personally and in their investigation), they start to see they work well together as a team. Using vastly different sources, they are able to get enough information to piece together the mystery at a satisfying pace.
As for the mystery itself, I was pretty satisfied with the ending. I thought the beginning of the book had a great pace, and right after the murder things were moving right along, but then towards the end I felt like I was being left out a bit. In the last chapter Christopher puts everything together, but he doesn't explain himself. The big reveal scene was slightly confusing to me as I wasn't sure who was who (I won't go into it since I don't want to give anything away). Overall though, aside from feeling a little rushed at the end, I really enjoyed this book. I'll definitely be reading the second book in this series, and look forward to exploring some of Mr. Marston's other novels.
As it happens the two main characters,Christopher Redmayne and Constable Bale, play off each other quiet well. A little history is thrown in with a murder mystery for good measure. The inclusion of Redmaynes brother as a slight comic relief was a plus. I look forward to reading the second in the series.
Top reviews from other countries
But it's the writing that doesn't work for me. It's hard to put a finger on but.... it's laboured and flat, lacking economy and style. Where 'the feline reposed on the floor-covering' might be interesting, Mr Marston would definitely choose 'the cat sat on the mat'. It didn't keep me interested. At various points, the story stretches credibility. For example, it's not clear why the daughter of Littlejohn, the builder, becomes infatuated with Christopher Redmayne. Henry Redmayne is something of a caricature. Would a young upper-class lady such as Penelope really in the 1660s move independently, alone and unchaperoned around Kent and London? And the direct involvement of King Charles near the end just doesn't ring true.
In summary, a passable story, but it didn't feel very consequential. I won't be reading any more of these.